Kari-On Productions is proud to introduce
Pat Battstone and Antonella Chionna
Antonella Chionna began developing a deep appreciation for classical music at the age of twelve when she began training as a classical dancer and performing in theatres. She started training as a professional musician during the same year, influenced by opera, classical music, and jazz.
At the age of seventeen she started singing professionally, performing, recording, and collaborating with many artists from all over the world. In the years that followed she attended the Conservatory “Nino Rota” in Monopoli (BA) earning both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in Jazz Voice and Music, having studied with some of Europe’s most sought-after educators: Gianna Montecalvo, Judy Niemack, and Gianni Lenoci .
In 2013, she released her debut album Adiafora (Dodicilune - IRD, 2013) and 2 years later released Halfway to Dawn – a Song of Billy Strayhorn (Dodicilune - IRD, 2015), as an exclusive monograph dedicated to the music of Billy Strayhorn This received enthusiastic feedback from one of the leading musicologists of Strayhorn’s music: Walter van de Leur. It also gave her national attention, paving the way for concerts and reviews throughout Italy in highly esteemed journals and concert halls.
Many of her other vocal works are documented in the following musical anthologies: Hunger and Love – tribute to Billie Holiday (Dodicilune – IRD)and Music Live – I Giovani per I Giovani (ISMEZ ONLUS, 2016).
As a writer and poet, she followed a classical education as the basis of her studies, combining highly specialized readings of the literary tradition in search of new forms of expressions. A fervent reader, she carried out the study of contemporary literature as a self – taught author, meeting the prominent members of the Italian poetic literature: She has published two books of poetry, Epifanie Baritonali (Lupo, 2012) and Poghenos (Lietocolle, 2014). Many of her poetical works are also documented and mentioned in prominent literary anthologies.
Chionna started teaching modern singing at the age of eighteen. As a vocal trainer, she developed a personal vision of the vocal instrument: strictly connected to her discography, to her work on stage, and to her academic and intellectual background – showing how an excellent technique and knowledge of improvisation, combined with deep, sympathetic listening are the key to becoming a valuable artist.
Patrick Battstone began performing music professionally at the age of 14, playing in various rock, blues, and R&B bands in South Western Ohio. By the time he was 18, he had received lessons from Stan Kenton and Gary Burton, had been mentored by Oscar Treadwell (Oska T), and had played with James Brown’s recording sidemen as well as members of the musical “Hair.”
In 1973, he attended Berklee College of Music and soon after became a student of both Mme Chaloff and Charlie Banacos. One of his bands, which featured hometown friend Grover Mooney, opened the fabled 1369 Club in Cambridge in 1975. During the 80’s, Patrick studied the works of Scriabin under the renowned Serge Conus. In 1986, he returned to jazz, studying with Joanne Brackeen for a period of 6 years.
In the past 2 decades, he has been involved in various musical activities. Though his focus as an artist is creative improvisation, he certainly is skilled and experienced in any setting where jazz (no matter the style) or groove and R &B is needed. He is fluid in both solo appearances as well as leading ensembles; in both acoustic settings as well as electric. He leads an acoustic trio and quartet and has performed in numerous electric funk/rock groups.
Besides performing, he has been active in producing music, in teaching piano, and has managed and mentored numerous bands and venues. Lately, his main activity has been in the recording studio, having produced and released 10 CDs of his own and collaborated works. His last 4 CDs, Mystic Nights, The Last Taxi, Beyond the Horizon, and From Dream to Dream have all had excellent reviews and have charted into the mid-teens on the CMJ jazz charts.
His latest adventures has been in collaboration with the musical circles in Puglia Italy, namely those of Gianna Montecalvo in Bari and Gianni Lenoci in Monopoli. Along with his Italian counterpart, Antonella Chionna, they have produced 2 CDs since June 2016 . The first, Rylesonable, is a quartet effort that features poetry, improvisation, quasi-standards and electronica. This is being released on the Italian label, Dodiciluna, in Feb, 2017. The second is a duet that features the poetry of Surrealist Robert Desnos. He is also a member of the TSK TSK orchestra which was recently audio and video recorded. That effort is being post processed into a DVD.
When not performing music, Patrick works as a rocket scientist at Draper Labs in Cambridge.
Antonella Chionna, a young Italian vocalist and poetess from Southern Italy meets Pat Battstone, a long term Boston pianist. It started as a random contact - a friend of a friend - then a surprising response, followed by a dialog. Finally a collaboration was born that eventually included their musical circles spread across 2 continents.
The subject remained the same – Voice – as did the process of finding and developing it:
||: Record, critique, eliminate the worst, focus on the best :|| ( repeat ad infinitum )
It was through this process that the Poole-Battstone, Demos-Battstone, and Demos-Poole-Battstone musical dialogs were formed which produced 6 CDs over the past 5 years.
In Spring 2016, La Chionna arrived in Boston for a vacation, and, from the very first day, it was clear - we wanted to find our voice. After 2 weeks of touring and recording, a musical Voice appeared – Antonella Chionna Meets Pat Battstone - though a much different voice than the previous ones; this contains a 19th century romanticism and lyricism. Yet, it did not abandon the “Chamber Improvisation” that was born with the initial Poole-Battstone collaborations. The addition of accompanying surrealist poetry recitations as well as playing de-constructed standards added even more colors and flavors to the existing voices.
Her final days in the US were spent recording with Richard Poole, Kit Demos, and myself. The results were the union of the new and previous Voices - 4 soloists, 6 duets, and 4 trios under the guise of a quartet. As with our other CDs, what is presented on this effort is a cohesive set of a tracks that fit together as a unified work, capturing the highlights. Our recording sessions are similar to live performances in that all combinations of instruments make up a set. But for the economy of the recording, not all made the final cut, even though they may have been the better tracks.
One day we hope to release a CD of Abandoned Tracks.
As LaChionna states:
“I met these cool guys, for the first time, on my way to USA in the spring of 2016. I was 25 and quite impressed by the easiness that came from this kind of musical connection: blessed by the circumstances and privileged by a providential empathy, placed in the charming town of Cambridge (MA) at Ryles Jazz Club.
To me, that sounds Rylesonable.”
Pat Battstone, 12 December, 2016, Cambridge, MA
- Under a Persian Sky 5:58
- Thanatos 0:41
- As The Morning Drifts Away 1:31
- Lady Of The Waters 6:39
- Nell’Urna Molle e Segreta 1:26
- Ciao Ciao Andante 2:35
- Fida 3:13
- Sophisticated Lady 5:47
- Rather Life 4:15
- Oasis 4:18
- Rimpiattino Mannaro 2:56
- Lover Man / Nature Boy 12:04
Instrument - Player - Pronunciation:
Antonella Chionna: vocals
Pat Battstone: piano, fender rhodes
Kit Demos: double bass, modular synthesizer
Richard Poole: vibraphone